Developing a Marketing Plan
The basic stages include
1. examine the current situation
2. identify potential threats and opportunities
3. set objectives
4. develop strategies – including advertising and promotion. This paper illustrates the types of information typically appearing in each section of a product marketing plan. Business units within the firm have their own product marketing plans that focus on specific target markets and marketing mixes for each product. Product marketing plans typically include both strategic decisions (or what to do) and execution decisions (or how to do it). Marketing plans may be developed for a single brand, a product line, or a business unit that markets multiple product lines. Overall, planning is a process directed toward making decisions with tomorrow in mind. As such, planning is a means of preparing for future decisions so that they can be made rapidly, economically, and with as little disruption to the business as possible.1 Marketing plans may be for new products and services being introduced or for existing products or services. Regardless of the type of plan, all plans will be reviewed at least annually for needed revisions. Properly developed marketing plans can provide considerable benefits to firm performance. Plans:2 Act as a road map to guide future decisions.
Assist in management control and implementation of strategy. Assist in helping obtain resources for implementation.
Stimulate thinking and encourage better use of resources.
Help in the organization and assignment of responsibilities, tasks, and timing. Inform new employees of their roles in implementing existing plans and reaching objectives. Help generate awareness of strengths, weaknesses, opportunities, and threats. The Marketing Plan3
Frequently cited content issues and topics are enumerated for each stage in this section. Later in the exhibit, an example plan for a particular situation is presented.
Parts of the Marketing Plan
1. Executive summary
2. Situation analysis
3. Marketing objectives
4. Market selection: Target markets
5. Marketing strategy
6. Marketing mix: Action programs (specifics of marketing mix implementation) 7. Budgets, control, and accountability
Part 1: Executive Summary
A. The summary should present a description of the product/service, its target market and its need within that market. The summary should also present an overview of the main points of the plan (i.e., the marketing mix and the sales and profits for the first two years). B. The relationship between the organization’s mission, objectives, and strategy and the marketing plan should be clearly expressed. C. The summary should emphasize an action orientation.
Part 2: Situation Analysis
A. Describe the company’s current product(s) or service(s). 1. What are their sales in dollars?
2. What is their share of the market?
3. How do they compare to the competition?
B. Analyze and describe the company’s internal strengths.
C. Analyze and describe the company’s internal weaknesses. D. Analyze and describe the company’s potential opportunities. E. Analyze and describe the company’s potential threats.
F. Describe why the company is suited to develop the product/service being considered (e.g., company resources, existing customers, etc). EXTERNAL ANALYSIS (EXTERNAL ENVIRONMENT)
A. Describe important external conditions and/or trends affecting the industry: Social
1. Is the size of the market of the product category increasing or decreasing and how quickly? 2. Why has the market remained stable or changed?
B. Do these conditions create opportunities for the product/service? Do these conditions pose threats to the product/service? Part 3: Marketing Objectives
A. What are the corporate marketing objectives of the company? B. What are the specific marketing objectives of the product/service under evaluation? C. Are the...
References: Subhash C. Jam, Marketing Planning Strategy, 4th ed. (Cincinnati, OH: South Western Publishing Company, 1993), p. 5.
William A. Cohen, The Marketing Plan (New York, NY: John Wiley and Sons, 1995), p.
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